Giuliani’s media work for Trump may backfire on his business


WASHINGTON — Lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s decision to join President Donald Trump’s legal team could backfire on the former New York mayor if potential clients of his international consulting business view him as too erratic and go elsewhere for representation, according to legal experts.

Giuliani has become a lightning rod in the short time he’s been in the president’s corner leading an aggressive media blitz to fight back against accusations that could threaten Trump’s presidency. He’s stunned Trump’s inner circle by making confusing and at times contradictory statements that could trigger even more legal and political headaches for the White House. Giuliani, for example, recently had to backpedal after he was quoted as saying that Trump had denied AT&T’s bid to purchase Time Warner for $85 billion.

“Giuliani’s television appearances do not inspire confidence in his ability as a lawyer or as a public relations professional,” said Kathleen Clark, a law professor at Washington University in St. Louis. She said she could understand why the powerhouse law firm Greenberg Traurig, where Giuliani worked until last week, “would want to distance itself” from Giuliani’s on-air performance.

Norm Eisen, who served as President Barack Obama’s special assistant for ethics and government reform, said Giuliani hasn’t demonstrated the steady hand that “sophisticated legal consumers” demand.

“It could be good for Giuliani’s consulting and legal work if he were doing a better job,” Eisen said. “But no clients are going to be won over by the fact that he’s implicated Trump,” said Eisen, who chairs the left-leaning Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a non-profit watchdog group that’s frequently challenged Trump for alleged conflicts of interest.

As the public face of Trump’s legal team, Giuliani has said he couldn’t guarantee that the president wouldn’t end up asserting his constitutional right to refuse to answer any questions from special counsel …read more

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